Under accreditation rules, an organisation’s certification may be suspended for a number of reasons:
- the client’s management system has persistently or seriously failed to meet the requirements of the standard eg Major non-conformances raised
- the client does not allow audits to be complete at the required frequency
- the client voluntarily requests a suspension
If a Major Non-Conformance is raised, the client has a 30 day window to address the non-conformance and have the corrective actions verified and closed out. Until the non-conformance is closed, the status of the certification must be remain as “suspended” (if the non-conformance resulted in temporary suspension of the certification).
Please note that a major non-conformance may be raised if QMS received external evidence that a major failure in compliance has occurred. This may happen at any time if we are made aware of a major failure in a client’s management system – not just during an scheduled audit.
In the case of non-conformance, when we are satisfied that a major non-conformance has been addressed the non-conformance can be closed or downgraded. When this happens, the status of the certification immediately goes back to normal, meaning any temporary suspension is removed (if the non-conformance resulted in temporary suspension of the certification).
A certified organisation may withdraw, or have their certification withdrawn, in a number of ways:
- Voluntary withdrawal – An organisation may decide that it no longer requires certification, and make a formal request for withdrawal of the certification.
- Withdrawal by certification body – QMS may, for a number of justifiable reasons, withdraw a client’s certification. Reasons may include:
- failure to arrange an audit in the appropriate timeframe
- non-payment of invoices
- failure to address non-conformances in a timely manner